Missy Peregrym and Zeeko Zaki, two of the stars of the CBS drama FBI were asked about the government shutdown this week, and responded with a statement that sounds like it was written by the FBI’s Investigative Publicity and Public Affairs Unit. They talked about the FBI doing everything in its power to keep the US safe, and explained that this is why the TV show portrays the real-life FBI so positively.
I don’t know whether the real FBI are supporting the CBS series, but it’s pretty likely. Speaking at the TV critics association Zaki commented:
It’s an ode to the fact that we’re living in a time where the reputation of the [FBI] is [impacted] politically but it comes down to a group of people who won’t stop for anything, whether it’s money, politics to go in and save this country and that’s why it’s so exciting to try and represent them in the best way possible.
I was disappointed for them but they still showed up to work and protected the country, I’m in awe of them and I’m even more proud to be on the show with the character they displayed with the situation.
Talking about CBS’ early decision to renew FBI for a second season, Zaki went on:
I think it’s good news, I’m excited to grow the story. I think the FBI has so much to offer and there are so many integral parts so now we can dive in and give them the representation that they deserve.
Peregrym and Zaki’s comments echo a string of recent stories emanating from the FBI about how badly they have been affected by the (now ended, at least temporarily) government shutdown:
FBI agents group: Government shutdown putting national security, investigative operations at risk
Donald Trump’s government shutdown cripples FBI, raises terrorism risk
Government shutdown: FBI agents warn of impact on efforts to stop terrorism, sex and drug trafficking
FBI agents offer shocking warnings about the government shutdown’s effect on US safety
FBI agents say investigations into sex crimes against minors are being stalled because of the shutdown, putting children in jeopardy
But we’re being given a contradiction here – are the FBI so professional that they’re keeping the US safe in spite of the government shutdown, or are they so crippled by the shutdown that WON’T SOMEONE THINK OF THE CHILDREN!!!!? Meanwhile, the FBI did have a page up on their website responding to FAQs about the shutdown, but they have now taken it down and the link redirects to the homepage.
It seems that whether it’s news media or entertainment media, the FBI have been exploiting the shutdown for their own self-glorifying PR purposes. Several FOIA requests will be winging their way to the J Edgar Hoover building shortly.